While the newest episode of Attack on Titan, titled “Sunset,” didn’t give viewers much plot progression, the show did offer some defining moments for a few characters.
Breaking out of her crystal, Annie is back after four years. In the prior episode, “Thaw,” viewers witnessed Armin’s realization that if all hardening was undone by Eren, Annie would be free. Once the audience saw her break out, fans (including myself) were ecstatic to see her return.
After reuniting with Hitch, Annie’s backstory is finally talked about in-depth. Over the course of the anime, hints were dropped about her past, but no full story had been shown until now.
Annie talked about her relationship with her adoptive father.
She mentioned how she had been abandoned as a baby, a result of an Eldian affair. She went on to say how her Marleyan adoptive father raised her to be a warrior and how she never really felt like she had a place in life. As a result of this upbringing, she acknowledged it to be the reason for her disregard for human life.
Once Annie was finally ready to leave Marley, her father opened up to her and begged her to come back after she went on to be a warrior. This ended up being the cause for her change in thought later on.
Over time, we’ve all seen how ruthless Annie is. It’s interesting to see the character development she went through while being in a sort of “living” purgatory; noting the fact she told Hitch she could still hear while being partially unconscious and as she put it, “in darkness.”
Coming to her senses, Annie realized that because she didn’t feel her life had any meaning, it didn't automatically mean any other life had no meaning either.
Honestly, it was bittersweet to see such a backstabbing character find worth in herself and others after so long.
Going forward a bit, Floch is with some of the scouts trying to explain why he sides with Eren. While trying to explain that killing the entire world is justifiable, Jean’s facial expressions make it look like he’s going through the seven stages of grief.
We’ve seen strong development in Jean over the past few episodes. One example is him stepping forward to kill the titans who were once their friends, comrades and even leaders. Even Floch calls this development out, toying with Jean and how he should go back to being “annoying and cheeky”.
Jean is trying to come to terms with the entire Eren situation when he was interrupted by Mikasa asking him obvious questions with no answer. Fans ate up when he gave her the side-eye, resulting in a lot of edits and memes on social media.
More progression lies in an earlier scene with Armin and Mikasa. Armin completely blew up on her; honestly though, rightly so. It’s hard for Mikasa to see this happening and have no answers, but she isn’t putting much thought into the situation either and ends up relying on Armin. While he did have some good points, he (kind of) out of nowhere made a comment about how Erwin should’ve been saved and not him, but it’s a little too late for that buddy.
Mikasa and Armin have absolutely been through it because of Eren and they’re justified in their feelings, but it’s pretty sad for us to see how depressed Mikasa is because of him.
The ending of the episode was a little strange since they played credits over a scene, but still had another one after, but if it means more content in one episode, sign me up.
Connie is trying to fulfill his plan of feeding the unknowing Falco to his titan mom, which made it pretty hard to watch. Falco has no idea what’s been happening or what’ll happen, and Connie is playing his part.
To finish the episode out though, the viewers have all been waiting for the return of Levi and Hange. The scene may have given them less than ten seconds of screentime, but it’s better than another episode without them.
As the rumbling carries on and characters start to dive into their own heads, viewers anticipate the next episode to see what’s hopefully more than five minutes shoved into 23.